Salient. The Newspaper of Victoria University College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 19, No. 3. March 24, 1955
This is Weir — Presidential elections; Initiation ceremony; House records exhumed; and a Picnic
This is Weir
Presidential elections; Initiation ceremony; House records exhumed; and a Picnic.
Once again we have exercised our democratic right to elect our officers from a very good distillation of Housemen who had offered themselves for the honour, duties and abuse that fall to those elected to executive positions on the Weir House Association.
President thin year is Barry Boon, well known in the Varsity through his performances and organisation in a number of major sporting activities.
Last year, along with a considerable number of activities. Barry was our Junior Delegate at the Easter Tournament, and representing VUC in the inter-Varsity tennis he reached the men's singles Anal only to be narrowly beaten after an extremely tense and hard-fought match.
At the Winter Tournament he organised the Golf and finished up in the top half-dozen competitors. And this year, apart from the very heavy responsibility he will have as House President, he is to be VUC's Senior Delegate to Easter Tournament.
Guy Powles, Editor of last year's Weir Magazine, and a prominent law student, is Vice-president. Ba Waite is our Secretary, Barry Hume the Treasurer, and the Committee men are John Bathgate and Laurie Sinclair.
Disjecta Membra . . .
The annual custom of plastering the novices with shaving cream, silver nitrate and tradition was observed by the anointed of former years. For the first time in years the new draft outnumbered the old guard, but they went like lambs to the slaughter—bad omens these.
The procedure which was a model of unsubtlety, revolved mainly around a series of acutely personal questions put by Messrs. Schroder and Rich. ("And what are your views on free love"). The replies varied from "Whacko." (cheers) to "Really!" (Cries of "Shame!")
The subjects were then introduced to William Weir's Boot, an hallowed reminder of past inglory, deeply steeped in good Kelburn mud, standing rampant upon a kerchief plush. They kissed it.
A toast was proposed to William Weir, the glasses being charged with a passable beverage consisting chiefly of Epsom salts. Mr. Waite rapidly grew tired of his decoy brew. Mr. Chamberlain's deft smoothing of home-made shaving cream drew admiring cries, as did Mr. Corbett's use of the scimitar. There was an unidentified character in blue bathing shorts. The big new summer range of penalties included the rape of the lock, "launching." and setting loose in Darkest Wellington (Bot. Gardens).
In a prettily delivered speech our ex-Pres., John Marchant, chanced to mention that Mr. Rich, that inquisitorial inquisitor, had never been initiated. Mr. Powles called the meeting to disorder, and Rich was thoroughly scathed. A series of ghastly outrages was then perpetrated on Messrs. Hume and Govern-lock. Finally baptised freshers retired to the rooms of confirmed Housemen for informal suppers. They were delicious.
But—There was a distinct lack of planning and forethought—in spite of hard work by Mr. Schroder, there were barren (and this in Weir!) pauses. The programme was not flexible enough to permit refinement or subtlety. The most homely and heart-warming indelicacies palled, and the natural end was a messy, rowdy one for variation.
Now it Can be Told
Inspired by the [unclear: pleus] desire to learn something of the organisation of the House in its earlier days we took time off the other night to go through the House Records, recently rescued from oblivion by a special committee headed by John Marchant and Don Jamieson.
We were astounded, nay flabbergasted, at the evidence of lawless-nets, libido and lubricity smeared on each and every page of these early records. The present situation on the S.E. border of Somaliland precludes the unexpergated revelation of what happened the night the cats were swung. (N.B. They were dead). However it is the intention of this fearless column to work systematically through these mildewed MSS. and uncover some of the sordid scandals that might otherwise have been mercifully forgotten.
This Week: The Proclamation Of Mr. G—
On June 29, 1936, a hushed group of Housemen stood clustered around the common room notice board studying a proclamation announcing the unveiling of the new Maid's quarters. Speakers named in this document include:—
"Dr. Iwan Superman, intermediate B.C. Prizeman. B.Z. (Failed).
S. Icclebumme, Esq. B.O. (Borst).
Prof. Ardomson, D.C.L. Edin. Meretricious Professor of International Conjugal Relation. Reno.
The opening ceremony was to be performed by—
The Rt. Hon. Issachar fine Lever, Viscount de Creppitt."
It so happened that during, an early morning inspection, a practice now mercifully discontinued, the Warden, Dr. S——. noticed this document and paid the authors the compliment of removing it. With what was described in a subsequent House Manifesto as "a total lack of humour" he immediately took the name of the leading member of the syndicate who had drafted the "proclamation," and reported the matter to the management committee.
Upon being asked to apologise by the Management Committee, the resident in question, Mr. G.——. did so twice (the first apology was turned down by the Warden) and then was told to leave the House. The House Association, considering that one of its members had been unjustly treated held several protest meetings and sent letters to each of the members of the management committee. This soon drew a reply from the Warden stating:—
"In view of its recent action, I can no longer regard the Weir House Assn. as a responsible body, and I hereby withdraw all official recognition of it ... "
The last word in the affair seems to be contained in a motion discovered in the Assn. Minutes Book—October 18. 1936:
"That the Warden be recognised."—carried unanimously.
The cold front, specifically intended for the MCC was delayed but arrived in time for the Weir Picnic. Punctually at 9.30, Housemen appeared some with cases and consorts, some from couches or cubicles, and flung the cases and a little incidental baggage into three converted horse-floats.
Deprived of their usual topic by its presence, the males were pretty subdued to begin with. The aimless mob was disgorged into a damp compound with one dry corner which your correspondents occupied. In the hour or so before lunch, we volleyed, putted and gazed at grey sky and sombre sea. Lunch was consumed in various paleolithic postures, but the weather was clearing and vinegar was consumed in immense quantities.
The House tennis final was played between Barry Boon and Chas. Chamberlain. Barry, though he double-faulted frequently, clicked with rather more smashes and passing shots than Chas. We think the interest of players and spectators flagged near the end. Barry won 7-5. 6-3. It must have been the vinegar.
About the time of departure from Day's Bay, the sky assumed a shade of blue no doubt imparted by some of the more thoughtful picknickers. An informal dance and sing-song at the House after tea was certainly the most enjoyable feature of the" day.
—J. O. Gamby
—J. D. Dawick.